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How Do I Account For Drive Time, Load Time, Clean Time In My Estimates?

 

How Do I Account For Drive Time, Load Time, Clean Time In My Estimates? (Maintenance/Snow/Mowing/Service Version)

LMN can help make sure you capture this time, but it really depends on how you estimate.  Below, we're going to outline a few scenarios that will help you recover this time but make sure you use the method that matches the way you estimate.

Some companies include driving/prep/cleanup hours when they estimate.  Other companies don't.  It's critical that you use the method below that best matches the way you estimate.  

 

RECOVERING DRIVETIME + SHOP TIME FOR MAINTENANCE CONTRACTS

If you include drivetime in your estimated hours...

If you include drivetime in your estimates (e.g. 15 min of driving time built into the estimated hours on the job/contract), then you have the cost driving time built into your bid.  However it's not fair that the first job absorbs all the load/prep time and the last job absorb all the cleanup time.  The best way to recover those times is by using the unbillable factor in your labor catalog.  

For instance, if your crews work a 10 hour day, and they spend .5 hr in the AM loading and .5 hr in the PM unloading and prepping, then at least 10% of your payroll hours are unbillable/unestimated.  

Note:  Remember that you will have other unbilled time on top of this.  You'll have warranty work, rework, unforseen problems (murphy's law), meetings, shop work, equip repair, etc.

How to setup and clock in to LMN Time

  • In the AM, they should clock in to a SHOP job, and a task called Load/Unload/Drivetime.  
  • When they get to their first job (Job 1), they should clock into that customer's job
  • They should stay clocked into Job 1 until they arrive at their next job (Job 2).  If you really want to track how much time spent driving, you could create a DRIVING task for Job 1.  The crew would then have to switch their task from whatever they were doing (e.g. MOWING) to the DRIVING task.  Note that this makes it more complicated for the crews.
  • This way, Job 1 absorbs the drivetime from Job 1 to Job 2.  Job 2 will absorb the drivetime from Job 2 to Job 3, and so on

Why this works...

  • If your estimates include drivetime hours you need to book drivetime to jobs.  If you booked drivetime to a task called DRIVING, your actual hours on jobs would always look better than the estimated hours... but it would only be because the jobs had driving hours included in the estimate, but not in the actual tracking.
  • Using the method above, each job is carrying drive time to the next job, so estimated hours will line up with actual hours.  
  • The cost of morning setup hours and afternoon cleanup hours are absorbed by the Unbillable Factor setup in the labor catalog.  The cost of these hours are factored into the cost (and price) we charge for the labor hours that we do estimate)

 

If you don't include drivetime in your estimated hours...

If you don't include drivetime or shop time, prep time or unload time in your estimated times (i.e. you only estimate time spent at the customer's property), then you must use the unbillable factor in the labor catalog to recover the costs of those hours.

For example, imagine a typical crew day was spent like this:

  • Loading in the AM (.5 hours)
  • Unloading in the PM (.5 hours)
  • Driving time or windshield time - daily total (1.5 hours)
  • Time spent physically on jobsites  (6 hours)
  • Total daily payroll hours (8.5 hours)
  • Unbillable % (non job hours) = 2.5 hours divided by 8.5 payroll hours = 30%
  • Note:  Remember that you will have other unbilled time on top of this.  You'll have warranty work, rework, unforseen problems (murphy's law), meetings, shop work, equip repair, etc.

 

How to setup and clock in to LMN Time

  • In the AM, they should clock in to a SHOP job, and a task called Load/Unload/Drivetime.  
  • Stay clocked into that task until they arrive at their first Job (Job 1)
  • They stay clocked into Job 1 until they are ready to leave Job 1.  Then, they clock back into SHOP and a task called Load/Unload/Drivetime
  • They stay clocked into SHOP - Load/Unload/Drivetime until they arrive at their 2nd Job (Job 2).  Then, they clock into Job 2
  • Repeat clocking in/out each time they arrive at and leave a jobsite until the end of day
  • As the crew leaves their last job for the day, they should clock back into SHOP - Load/Unload/Drivetime until the end of their shift

Why this works...

  • Your estimates don't include drivetime, so you don't want to track driving time to those tasks.  Otherwise, your actual hours would always look greater than estimated (even though it's only because you're treating them differently)
  • The cost of am prep, driving, and pm unloading are absorbed by the Unbillable Factor setup in the labor catalog.  The cost of these hours are factored into the cost (and price) we charge for the labor hours that we do estimate
 
 
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